A Favorite Food Destination - Cleveland

My family recently spent some time in one of our favorite cities to visit -- Cleveland. Yes, Cleveland! The city has much to offer people who enjoy food. Here are a few of our recommendations.

Market House at the West Side Market
The West Side Market has an open-air building with vendors selling reasonably priced produce, but the highlight is the market’s grand indoor market house. A yellow brick building built in 1912, it is home to more than 100 diverse vendors. Go hungry! For breakfast, I chose a freshly made crepe with Nutella and bananas; my husband found a pastry called a snugal; and a son picked a cannoli. We wised up this time and took a cooler so that we could bring back some unusual meat items – homemade buffalo chicken sausage, fresh Polish sausage (my husband’s favorite) and lamb gyro meat. I also made a stop at Urban Herbs, which sells hard-to-find spices and grains.

Across the street from the market, the Penzey’s Spices store is a fun place to shop. Their products are displayed in jars so you can give everything a whiff. We went home with cinnamon and extra-hot red pepper flakes in bulk bags, which provide a significant savings over buying spices at the grocery store. We also succumbed to the lure of mint hot chocolate mix.

Lola Bistro is located on East 4th Street,
a brick paved street lined with restaurants.
Michael Symon, best known as an Iron Chef on the Food Network, owns several restaurants in Cleveland. My older son and I are fans of his flagship restaurant -- Lola Bistro. The portions are smallish and the prices are high, but meals we’ve had there are among the best we’ve eaten. Next time we go, I’ll try to reserve a seat at the chef’s table, where you can watch the kitchen in action. I’d also like to try one of Symon’s less pricey restaurants, Lolita in particular.

Cleveland is less than a five-hour drive away – our family highly recommends the city for both food and fun!